What it Means to Find Your Center（找到你的中心是什么意思）
Our yoga class today focused on helping us to locate and find our center, a very important concept in yoga. But what does it mean to find your center? And what do we achieve by doing so?
First of all, we have to understand that the concept of center in yoga has a multifold meaning. At its fundamental, yoga is a union of mind, body and spirit, so the concept of the center in yoga derives from a juxtaposition of these ideas:
1. It is a physical center, a location just below the belly button, where the solar plexus (our 3rdchakra) is located. This is known anatomically as our core, and consists of muscles in the abdominal region as well as in the lower and middle back.
2. It is a spiritual center. The 3rd chakra is our center of strength. From it we derive our courage, our power and convictions, the ability to act purposefully and make decisions, etc.
In this sense, finding our center in yoga does not just mean locating it physically. It means, both in a physical and spiritual sense, learning to move from our center, learning to use its power and strength, and learning to lead our lives in a way that remains true to this center. As with other lessons in yoga, this is something that we have to live and experience both on and off the yoga mat so that, ultimately, it becomes a part of who we are.
1) Learning to Move From the Center
l Physically speaking, this means beginning all movements from the core outwards, using the strength and stability of the core muscles of the body to initiate and lead our movements. This gives us power, strength and optimal alignment, preventing injury and improving the posture so that our breath and energy (also called prana or chi) can flow freely.
l Mentally speaking, as yogis we have to remain true to ourselves, to our true convictions, and to the purity inside us. All our actions should arise from this place inside us so that we can live peacefully and with no regrets. Understanding our convictions and acting based on these true beliefs will also result is steadfastness, determination and courage in our lives.
2) Finding Balance
l Finding our physical center helps to keep the body steady and balanced. One very important aspect of this in yoga is maintaining the pelvis aligned and steady. One of my yoga teachers has described the pelvis as a bowl that holds the sacred water of the Ganges. As such, we must not tilt the bowl and spill this sacred water. Upsetting the balance of the pelvis causes us to lose stability and power.
l Similarly, it is important to keep ourselves aligned in our spiritual and mental lives as well. Excesses and imbalances of any sort can cause other areas of our lives to become misaligned as well as with our physical bodies, everything is connected and nothing moves in isolation.
3) Becoming Grounded
l Strengthening our center leads to stability. With good alignment and posture and a well-centered body, our feet remain firmly planted on the ground even in challenging asana and difficult balancing postures.
l Similarly, once we have found our spiritual and mental center and strengthened and balanced it, we have a sense of grounding and stability in our lives. We no longer feel like we are freewheeling through our day to day with no control over what comes next; we are overtaken by a sense of calm and serenity as we appreciate that we can remain quite still even as the world revolves around us. We find the support of mother earth even in the most tumultuous of times, and we are not easily toppled over.